In a bid to foster trade relations in Africa, the Italian export credit agency (SACE) and other Italian companies, have recently made plans to commence a trade mission organized by the Ministry of Economic Development and led by Vice Minister Carlo Calenda to Ghana and Ethiopia.
Vice Minister Calenda stated in Rome, that the Italian Export Credit Agency (SACE) and other Italian companies now saw Ethiopia and Ghana as priorities in their plans to become African leading trading partners and emphasized the importance of trade relations with Sub-Saharan Africa which he described as an important market for the future.
He said the Italian Government had launched several initiatives to boost exports to the region, which reached a billion Euros in the third quarter of 2015, “almost four times as much as in the same period of 2014”.
Calenda pointed that Ethiopia’s Growth and Transformation Plan 2015-20 which is aimed to boost industrialization, would open great opportunities for Italian exports, in particular mechanical engineering related to sectors such as textiles and clothing, leather and tannery production, and chemical and pharmaceutical products. He also added that Italian exports to Ethiopia in 2014 amounted to 263 million Euros, in line with the previous year, and concerned in particular mechanical engineering, transport and electrical appliances.
The Italian Credit Agency had set up its ‘Frontier Markets’ program in sub-Saharan Africa, dedicated especially to small and Medium-sized Enterprises, and the agency offered assistance from its offices in Johannesburg and Nairobi, in order to provide lines of credit to companies and support business with local partners. It also supplied consultancy services to evaluate the sectors with the greatest potential and the underlying risks whether credit, political, regulatory, or environmental.
The primary Italian export markets in Africa, in addition to Ethiopia and Ghana, are Nigeria, Angola, the Congo, Kenya, South Africa and Sudan